Honda Considers India as 2nd Largest Market

India is gonna be the biggest global market for Japanese giant Honda’s two – wheeler business by the year 2015 before eventually accounting for around 30 per cent of its overall market share. At present, the share is 13 per cent but the company is concentrating on new product launches as part of the company’s aggressive growth strategy.

The 110 cc bike – Dream Yuga, which was  unveiled at the Auto Expo 2012, will roll out this  year for the mass market which is a segment in which Honda’s ex – alliance partner, the Hero  group dominates with the Splendor and Passion brands which reigns the segment.

The ‘Yuga’ bike is expected to be priced competitively at around INR 45,000, which could  give the company the much needed momentum to increase its market share in the sub – continent. The other launches from the company included an upgraded 110cc Dio scooter as well as the CBR 150R and the CBR 250R bikes.

Officials said Honda R&D would now work closely with the Manesar operations of HMSI (Honda Motorcycle & Scooter India), which would facilitate faster product launches in the coming years. In addition, the company will increase the number of its zonal offices and training centers keeping in mind the growing demand from smaller towns and the need to be closer to this critical buyer base.

This time, Honda is determined to make up the lost numbers ceded to the Hero group, which works out to over five million units annually. The new revised strategy will be part of an aggressive play in the pricing segment while the company also offers top quality products.

In this process, India will take over from Indonesia and Vietnam as Honda’s biggest two – wheeler market over the next five years. As for the bigger goal of 30 per cent share in its global business, Honda’s annual two – wheeler volumes here would have to be in the region of 10 million units annually. Industrial observers believe that this could become a reality by the year 2020 (Finally, we’ve got one more reason to mention the year 2020!)

Presently, somewhere around four million units are in place from its three units in Manesar (which is the largest with 1.6 million), the recently commissioned Rajasthan plant and the newly identified site in Karnataka (with capacities of 1.2 million units each). The balance six million bikes and scooters, in that case, will have to be generated from new facilities even as reports are already doing the rounds that Honda is looking at options in the western and southern regions post the year 2014.

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